The first bill sponsored by freshman Rep. Dennis Moore, D-Kan., was introduced Wednesday to end the practice of leaning on the Social Security trust fund to present a rosy budget picture to Americans.
Moore, who convinced eight Democrats to cosponsor the bill, said the legislation would require the Office of Management and Budget and the Congressional Budget Office to keep the trust fund off the budget.
"It is important that we pass this legislation so we can stop talking about `general surplus' and `Social Security surplus,' so we can all speak the same language and tell the truth to the American people," Moore said.
He said the reality was that there was no federal budget surplus without counting revenue in the Social Security trust fund. The federal government ought not cut taxes or raise spending based on budgets that factor in the trust fund, he said.
"This is not going to save Social Security. This is a first step to understanding where we are with the budget and Social Security."
Under the bill, Social Security funds wouldn't be counted in the unified federal budget beginning with fiscal year 2000.
None of the three Republican U.S. House members from Kansas endorsed the measure.
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